- Queen Elizabeth II has been married to Prince Philip for 71 years.
- Two experts analysed photographs of the pair over time.
- They rarely show public affection, yet some small gestures suggest that they are still deeply committed to one another.
- Her Majesty naturally takes the lead but the Duke is never far behind.
- They share a special touch.
Tuesday, November 20 marks Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip’s 71st wedding anniversary.
Despite their old age, the pair appear to still be touchingly committed to one another.
They’re not known for wild public displays of affection, but the little they do show reveals a lot, according to body language experts.
Earlier this year, Patti Wood, the author of SNAP: Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language, and Charisma, and Blanca Cobb, behind Methods of the Masters, analysed photographs of the Queen and her Prince over time – and told Good Housekeeping that little has changed over the years.
While the younger royals are more comfortable with showing their down-to-earth sides to the public, it’s understandable that the older generation is a little more stiff.
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh marked their platinum wedding anniversary – an impressive 70 years of marriage – in November 2017. They’ve been through a lifetime of royal duties and, if the rumours are true, even affairs.
Yet the one thing that has never changed is their uncompromising commitment to one another.
Cobb told Good Housekeeping: “When you look beyond the royal formality of Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth’s public appearances, you clearly see Prince Philip’s love and adoration for his Queen.”
- Getty / William Lovelace
And the feeling appears to be mutual.
- Reuters / Stringer
But according to Wood, being the Monarch and all, the Queen feels the need to assert her independence, and she is “always trying to be seen as her own person.”
- Reuters / Ian Gavan
He naturally lets her take the lead, but he’s never far behind.
They even have a special touch that isn’t all about affection.
- Getty / Carl Court
“This type of hand hold is seen time and time again,” said Wood. “It’s more formal than interlocking fingers but it’s unique to them. It’s their way of reassurance and comfort.”
Although these days, she pointed out, the touch is also for practical reasons, as at 92 years old Her Majesty is not as strong as she once was. “In her older years, the Queen holds hands with the Prince for assistance as opposed to affection.”
- Getty / Chris Jackson
And the Prince is always dutifully ready and waiting. “He’s constantly looking at the Queen to make sure that she’s okay. He’s completely in tune with her needs,” Cobb added.
During public appearances, you’ll often catch them engrossed in a private conversation, a feat for any couple after a lifetime of marriage.
And they really do seem to still share the look of love…
- Reuters / Paul Hackett
… and make each other smile.
- Getty/Danny E. Martindale
Rosie Fitzmaurice contributed to an earlier version of this post.